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Tags: Nigeria

Nigeria’s Fire Service Act outdated and should be repealed, says Minister

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Minister calls for repeal of Nigeria’s Fire Service Act

The Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, has called for the repeal of the Fire and Rescue Service Act of 1963, stating that the law is outdated and does not reflect the current global realities of the service, as reported by PUNCH.

At the groundbreaking ceremony for the remodelling of the National Fire Academy in Abuja, Tunji-Ojo emphasised that the Federal Fire Service should not be constrained by its past but should be empowered to create a beneficial future for Nigeria.

He said: “By the grace of God, we will see to the repeal and enactment of the Fire and Rescue Service Act.

“This present law of 1963 is obsolete. The scope of fire service all over the world in 2024 is different from what it was in 1963.

“We cannot continue to be held down to the apron of the past when we have an opportunity to create a future we will all be proud of.”

Enhancing fire service capabilities

Tunji-Ojo highlighted the broader responsibilities of the fire service, noting that it should act as the first responder in any emergency.

He said: “Your responsibility goes beyond just combating or preventing fire incidents.

“You ought to be the first responder in case of any emergency, and for you to be able to do that, you can only give what you have.

“That is why the government is going all the way to make sure we equip you with the required knowledge.

“This is not just for the Nigerian market but we want to be an exporter of rescue knowledge in Africa.”

National Fire Academy remodelling

Controller-General of the Federal Fire Service, Abdulganiyu Jaji, spoke about the ongoing remodelling of the National Fire Academy, which aims to transform the institution into a comprehensive hub for all Life Safety Training in Nigeria and beyond.

Jaji said: “With the capabilities and capacity built in the Academy, the institution will be a one-stop shop for all training in Life Safety Systems for Nigeria and beyond.

“The National Fire Academy has produced well-trained firefighters in Basic and Advanced Firefighting and Rescue courses, Career Progression Courses, Incident Command Systems, Strategic Administration, Breathing Apparatus, etc.”

Collaboration and training requests

Jaji also mentioned the diverse groups that have received training at the academy, including the Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Navy.

He noted the international interest in the academy’s programs, saying: “We have received requests for collaboration and training both within and outside Nigeria, notably as the request from the Gambian Authorities expressing the need to have Nigeria’s assistance in building the capacity of the personnel of the country’s security agencies in Firefighting, Fire Protection and Rescue.”

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